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Topic: How long in Media Mail transit

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Subject: How long in Media Mail transit
Date Posted: 7/11/2008 12:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2006
Posts: 126
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I have a person PMing me every other day for a book that just came this morning.  He figured it should have taken 6-7 days to get here via MM, but it did took 11.  I would like to give him some information on the transit time for MM so that he won't "hound" (for lack of a better word) someone else.



Date Posted: 7/11/2008 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2007
Posts: 2,164
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Wow, the repeated PMs must have gotten annoying.  He must be new to this!  I've had books take up to two months to get to me (although that's rare, of course).  Here's some info from the Help Center you could send to him:

Q:  "I haven't received my book yet. Is it lost in the mail?





It may simply be delayed in making its way to you.

  • USPS Media mail packages can take a variable amount of time in transit.
  • The average is 9 days; some books travel much more quickly, some take longer
    • If a book is travelling further (ie, being sent from the Continental US to Hawaii, AK, PR, GU, VI, or an APO/FPO address), it will usually take longer to get where it is going.
  • You will receive reminder auto-emails to mark your book received at regular intervals after it was marked mailed:
    • These are helpful to some requestors who forget to do this after getting a book.
    • Marking a book received as promptly as possible after receiving it is essential to maintaining your account in good status at PBS.

If the book has not been received by the 26th day after it was marked mailed by the sender:

  • It will be declared lost in the Mail at PBS, and you will be notified by email.
  • It is not uncommon for books that have been declared "Lost in the Mail" at PBS to arrive at their destinations.
    • For this reason, we do not recommend re-requesting a Lost book until it has been "lost" for at least 2 weeks.
    • When a Lost book is received, it must be marked received from your Transaction Archive, accessible from a link on the My Account page, or from the dropdown menu under My Account in the toolbar at the top of the site."


You could also point out that the system says under each transation NOT to contact PBS about a book until after 26 days in the mail.  Thats because media mail is the slowest way to mail things and sometimes it takes just that long to get there.  So, because they are directed not to contact PBS, the same courtesy should apply to contacting the sender, IMO.

Hope that helps.

Last Edited on: 7/11/08 2:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/11/2008 2:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2006
Posts: 126
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Thanks, that is exactly what I needed, and I couldn't find it.

I greatly appreciate it...I guess I should go mark the book mailed now, although I wish I could let him sweat it a few more days...LOL!


Date Posted: 7/14/2008 3:00 PM ET
Member Since: 6/17/2008
Posts: 626
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LOL.. Dawn I would definitely tell him to chill out (kindly of course LOL).  I usually give MM 2 weeks and am rarely disappointed with this. 

You may want to explain what Media Mail is... I view MM as kind of like a Space-Available form of transit (I was raised on a military base and oversease we have SAM-Space Available Mail).  Basically, if other bins with higher postage (i.e. priority, first-class, etc.) then those packages obviously get priority, this is why Media Mail tends to take longer.  


Date Posted: 7/15/2008 12:38 AM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2007
Posts: 1,305
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When he marked it sent it should have gave an estimated time for delievery, which is like a month or more. LOL

I mailed a book early AM July 6th in the same city the book was going. It's still not there, five days later it was in another dang city. I thought for sure it would be delivered in two days at the most. How crazy is that?

The only books I have gotten that did take forever and a day were books that were really not mailed when marked, the postage strip was dated a week or two later.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 7:24 AM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
Posts: 2,941
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I start to get impatient when it takes longer than a week or so, but geez!

It could be the Pulseof PBS section under Community that has him misled.  They've got a way to check the average transit times between cities and they all seem to come up as 6, 7 or 8 days.  It's just an average though, which means it's really no indicator at all.  Media Mail is wacky, too.  I mailed a book from Ohio to Idaho that took 3 days to get to Florida (?!?!?) and 7 more days to get to Idaho.  It's a nifty looking V on my mail-van map lol.